We all take driving for granted, thinking that having access to our own vehicles gives us the freedom and independence to go anywhere, anytime, and everything likely to be fine between your current location and your destination. Many even head out with the thinking of “it’s only a few miles, what’s the worst that can happen?” or “I drive along that road every day and nothing’s ever gone wrong”, yet the winter can turn even the safest of roads into potential nightmares.
Car safety is of paramount importance, and not just to ensure that we are kept safe ourselves. Every time you get behind the wheel of a car, your actions directly affect the safety of every other road user you come across, and even pedestrians. It isn’t just the quality of your driving that makes those risks; it’s the overall quality of your car. That doesn’t mean that you have to be driving a Lamborghini to be safe, your Ford Focus would be completely fine, but you need to make sure that every part is working at optimum level and that includes things like lights and indicators.
If other road users and pedestrians can’t see your intentions because you have faulty or dirty indicators, they may well try and continue along their route or cross the road they believe to be clear. This is just one example, but lights are a major factor. A lot of drivers – mostly unknowingly – drive around with lights that are too dirty to take effect or not even switched on during the twilight period in the evening, or during the darker mornings. Winter is famous for seeing more accidents than any other time. The dark morning and evening commutes don’t help, nor does the low sun that can affect visibility Wide Info.
It’s also a time of year when opportunist thieves take advantage of the longer dark periods. More cars are stolen at this time of year than any other because they can work under the cover of darkness and harsh weather when people are less likely to be around to either spot or interrupt them. For that reason, it’s vital that you take every possible precaution to protect your beloved vehicle in the form of an alarm or immobilizer or even a steering wheel lock. Some vehicles even have tracking devices fitted in an attempt to make tracking them down much simpler, alerting the police if the vehicle is stolen.
Winter Driving Tips – An infographic by T W White & Sons